991 Tai Chi

Monica talks about the increasingly popular exercise of Tai Chi.


Todd: So, Monica, you do Tai Chi?

Monica: Yes, I've just joined a Tai Chi club?

Todd: What made you join the Tai Chi club?

Monica: Well, I wanted to do something that was a lot different to what I usually do, which is high impact sports like basketball and tennis.

Todd: So, you wanted to do something that was slower?

Monica: Yeah, well, I don't usually enjoy exercise that is quite slow such as yoga, but I decided to join this club and I'm really enjoying it.

Todd: So, what exactly is Tai Chi? What do you do in Tai Chi?

Monica: Well, there are different types of Tai Chi. There's the original Tai Chi which involves quick fast movements, and then there's a slower form of Tai Chi which is quite popular in Japan. I think it's called Mr. Young Tai Chi, and that involves very slow pronounced movements, and that's the Tai Chi that I'm doing.

Todd: How do you feel? Like after you do Tai Chi, do you feel tired? Do you feel energetic?

Monica: After I've done Tai Chi I feel quite energetic actually. I don't really feel tired because I haven't had a really hard workout, but I feel that my mind is very relaxed and focused and that I'm very motivated to do whatever I need to do for the rest of the day.

Todd: Now, you actually are a tennis coach, so you teach sports. Would you recommend Tai Chi for other athletes?

Monica: Yeah, I do recommend Tai Chi for other athletes. It's quite difficult to know exactly how you would benefit from Tai Chi, and how it can directly relate a specific sport, but I've heard that it works on your energy levels, and focuses your mind so that everything is in balance, and I think that can help in kind of sport because even in a sport like tennis, it's important to have balance when you're hitting the ball, when you're volleying, when you're getting ready for a smash. It actually involves having balance in terms of where your center of gravity is, so yeah, the concepts are similar.


Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

high impact sports


I like high impact sports like basketball and tennis.

'High impact sports' involve a lot of running and jumping. Notice the following.

  1. For health reasons, older adults should avoid high impact sports.
  2. High impact sports can be more dangerous but, they're fun to play!

for the rest of the day


This is what I need to do for the rest of the day.

'The rest of the day' is the time remaining in our day after we complete an activity. Here are two samples.

  1. I ate something bad for lunch. I think I'll take the rest of the day off.
  2. I've finished all my classes so for the rest of the day I'm going to surf the net.

energy levels


It works on your energy levels.

Your 'energy level' is your physical power to do something. Notice the samples.

  1. My energy level is always higher after a good night's sleep.
  2. Carbohydrates can quickly increase your energy level.

a smash


He is getting ready for a smash.

In tennis, 'a smash' is a very powerful downward hit that most often can't be returned by an opponent. Here are some samples.

  1. Match point was decided by a crushing smash.
  2. The bright sun overhead caused him to miss an easy smash.

center of gravity


You stand where your center of gravity is.

'Our center of gravity' is a point or position where our weight is balanced. Notice the sample sentences.

  1. In rugby a low center of gravity increases power during contact.
  2. A natural awareness of one's center of gravity is important for a gymnast.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

Got another minute! Try these lesssons.

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996 Yve's Reflections
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Shirley talks about a prank she did with her brothers.

994 Farm Life
994 Farm Life
Todd and Monica discuss the allure of life on the farm.

993 Kiwi Adventure
993 Kiwi Adventure
Monica gives some tips on what to do in New Zealand.

992 Long Life
992 Long Life
Monica and Todd discuss the secrets of having a long life.

991 Tai Chi
991 Tai Chi
Monica talks about the popular exercise of Tai Chi.

Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
high impact • rest of the day • energy level • smash • center of gravity
  1. I have a meeting this morning, but after that I will be in the office for the .
  2. His opponent sent a to the opposite side of the court.
  3. The statue had a high and fell over easily.
  4. After his car accident he couldn't play sports anymore.
  5. A few hours after my morning coffee my is really low.